In case you missed it, we’ve been on a social media roller coaster with Diet Sabya, Indian fashion industry’s biggest watchdog on Instagram. On Friday, the anonymous Instagram account posted side-by-side comparisons of fashion designer Anamika Khanna’s “AK-OK” design and Air Jordon sneakers inspired by Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour’s “AWOK” signature. The fashion observer’s post featured actor Sonam Kapoor’s look from Isha Ambani and Anand Piramal’s wedding in Mumbai on December 12. Diet Sabya’s Instagram account, boasting more than 1.3 lakh followers, is known for exposing egregious (#gandi) copies in the fashion world. However, it is safe to say that Diet Sabya — which is followed by fashion aficionados, including the likes of filmmaker Karan Johar — ruffled a few feathers with its latest post. Even Sonam Kapoor got involved and stood behind her designer friend, Anamika Khanna. Diet Sabya deleted the post on Friday evening. But here’s a screenshot:

Diet Sabya’s post on the Anamika Khanna design worn by Sonam Kapoor (Instagram)

In its original post calling out fashion designer Anamika Khanna, Diet Sabya had posted, “We know this is going to cause major heartburn, but we simply cannot ignore the fact that’s AK-OK is TOO CLOSE in concept to the Jordans @voguemagazine launched in June 2018, with AW-OK. What would Anna say? ? Thoughts?” Inspiration for the Air Jordon collection is drawn from Anna Wintour, who reportedly approves everything editorial or creative by simply writing “AWOK,” which stands for “Anna Wintour Okay.”

Soon Diet Sabya’s post on fashion designer Anamika Khanna’s “AK-OK” creations exploded into a full-scale social media debate, and Sonam Kapoor, along with film producer, stylist and her sister Rhea Kapoor, came out in support of the designer by leaving multiple comments on the now-deleted post. On Friday, Sonam also expressed her pride in being the designer’s muse and voiced her support and love for Anamika Khanna by sharing a photo of her pink lehenga from the Ambani wedding and captioned it, “My dear friend had gone through a terrible illness in the last year. Her beautiful twin sons @viraj_khanna and @thevisheshkhanna banded together and surrounded her gave her comfort and inspiration. The common slang that is used amongst people is A-Ok in America. Viraj and Vishesh who just returned from America after four years in the prestigious university of Southern California, used the same term playfully with their mom when she was down, saying “mom everything is going to be AK-OK” dear Anamiks I’m so glad everything is eventually AK-OK im so so fortunate to be your muse and @rheakapoor and I get to collaborate with you. I hope I never take you for granted. Love you so much! I shed a tear when I wore this outfit because I know it was inspired by your boys and they gave you strength during your lowest.”

Sonam Kapoor, Rhea Kapoor comment on the post by Diet Sabya (Instagram)

Speaking to Hindustan Times, Diet Sabya creators opened up about everything that happened since they shared the post, reiterating that they aren’t afraid to speak their mind — even when their opinion isn’t well received. “We take our jobs seriously, and more often than not we cross check our references. We’ve cross checked refs to a point where we’ve made designers pay artists they’ve unknowingly ripped off. These are #Facts,” they told HT.

Diet Sabya creators also revealed that it wasn’t until after speaking with fashion designer Anamika Khanna’s family that they decided to take down the post. Their decision is not necessarily a bad thing, “It’s just for the better,” they say.“With this post we felt like the concept was too close for comfort. Having said that, we spoke to the Khanna boys and felt that we need to take this call,” Diet Sabya creators told Hindustan Times, adding, “This in no way shows that we are weak. This decision was primarily out of empathy.” Fashion designer Anamika Khanna has yet to respond to Diet Sabya’s post.

Diet Sabya also posted a message for its followers on its Instagram story, writing, “We apologise ONLY to our followers because if feels like we failed you in this crazy debate… Please note that we’ve taken this action under no influence from any A-list celebrity/celebrities, or their emotional public cry. This decision was taken out of empathy and not intimidation… DS-OK?”

Sharp-tongued Instagram account Diet Sabya is known for their comparison posts, exposing designers who rip others’ work off. Since their first post in March 2018, the anonymous account has been bluntly naming and shaming established and emerging designers, stylists and photographers for knocking off others’ work, be it in designs, cuts or patterns.

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First Published: Jan 12, 2019 11:18 IST


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